Old beech forest that has been felled in one of Romania’s national parks to become bioenergy.

Unique virgin forests are being logged in national parks, nature reserves and Natura 2000 sites in Romania. This has been ongoing for several years right in front of the eyes of the EU and with the support of the Romanian Government. In the beginning of February, Protect the Forest signed an open letter together with other international environmental NGOs in order to get the Romanian Government to act. Your support is needed – sign the petition in order to change the situation. Also watch this documentary, and share it!

However, now the European Commission is taking legal action against Romanian authorities for illegal logging of Europe’s last primeval forests.

The announcement follows complaints submitted last year to the European Commission by environmental groups Agent Green, ClientEarth and EuroNatur against Romania’s ongoing and deliberate destruction of tens of thousands of hectares of its protected old-growth and primeval forests.

The groups mean that Romania’s state forestry management is conducting logging operations within protected Natura 2000 areas without proper analysis of the impact in these unique sites. Failure to carry adequate and strategic environmental assessments when approving logging in protected areas and lack of access to environmental information breaches EU law.

The environmental groups therefore welcome the launch of the Commission’s infringement proceedings against Romania as a new hope to protect the country’s natural forests.

The Romanian government will have one month to send a detailed reply to the concerns raised by the European Commission. The Commission will then decide whether to take further steps towards bringing the case before the Court of Justice of the European Union – the EU’s highest court.

Read more in Euronatur’s press release here.